So I think, being somewhat adept at programming, I should make my own “graduate student” organizer. The main reason for doing this is that it will force me to better categorize the information and publications I find from day-to-day. Being able to organize this sort of information in a consistent, coherent fashion will be a huge benefit!
First step will be to reduce even the most complex of ideas to some template of abstraction. Once abstracted I can use a database like SQLite and store all the information. First, a few big questions to tackle before programming anything and then a few ways of hopefully answering some of these questions:
- What “template” is good enough to reduce the largest range of ideas? (i.e. components simple and complex ideas share and can be categorized by)
- What medium is best? (i.e. should this program have a GUI or should a collection of executable files be used at the command line?)
- How will sources of information in the DB be referenced? (i.e. bits of information should hold pointers to locations where the information first appeared to me)
A few comments/ideas I have for the three current questions:
- One way to test different templates for data is to practice writing up a little short formatted segment on important stuff I find and later revisit the array of templates to see which makes the most sense afterwards.
- Probably best to program executable files first, play with the functionality and ways of displaying, then possible build a GUI on top of these programs at some later point.
- For this it might be best to create a collection of folders in DropBox and save a string in the DB which informs me of which folder the source information is saved in. The source information could just be a .txt file with a link to a website. I don’t really see DropBox going anywhere in the next 4/5 years so I should be save to do this. Even if they were to go under I will still have the files/folders.